The San Fernando Valley, commonly referred to simply as “The Valley,” is a heavily urbanized valley in the Los Angeles metropolitan area. Nearly two million people call it home, as do numerous companies that work in the entertainment industry. Serving as the borders for the 260-square-mile San Fernando Valley are the Santa Susana Mountains to the northwest, the Simi Hills to the west, the Santa Monica Mountains and Chalk Hills to the south, the Verdugo Mountains to the east, and the San Gabriel Mountains to the northeast.
Most of the San Fernando Valley is within the jurisdiction of the city of Los Angeles. Other incorporated cities within the area include Burbank, Glendale, Hidden Hills, Calabasas, and San Fernando. San Fernando, it should be noted, is where you will find the Mission San Fernando Rey de España. This mission was founded in 1797 and was the 17th of the 21 Spanish missions that were established in present-day California.
Other smaller communities of note in the San Fernando Valley include Encino, Mission Hills, Sherman Oaks, and Van Nuys, to name just a few. Marking the boundary between the San Fernando Valley and the communities of Hollywood and the Los Angeles Westside is the famous Mulholland Drive, so the area in general offers proximity to any number of great Los Angeles attractions. Among these attractions are mountain parks and recreation areas, with examples including Griffith Park and Topanga State Park. Griffith Park is one of the largest urban parks in North America and Topanga State Park is the largest park of any kind within the limits of a city (Los Angeles).
Major freeways cross the San Fernando Valley, and as is true of most of the Los Angeles area, traffic can be a problem. Rapid transit systems link the valley to other parts of Los Angeles should you wish to leave the driving up to someone else. The San Fernando Valley is also served by the Metrolink commuter rail, Amtrak, and two major airports. These airports are the Bob Hope Airport and the Van Nuys Airport.